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Sounds Local
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Bella’s Bartok 
Bella’s Bartok is a fun, energetic dance band that you can catch at the Old 78 Farm Festival in Warwick on Oct. 3.

Sounds Local: Dancing! Mayhem! Fun!

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

If you go to a Bella’s Bartok show, be prepared to dance. And that includes you chair-loving, vow-to-never-step-foot-on-a-dance-floor people. The six-piece band from Northampton, whose music is a circus-y Hungarian-influenced folk punk blend, is known for its wild, high-energy live shows. It’s hard to explain the band’s sound, but think of a punky klezmer band that sing songs with titles like “Frankenstein’s Monster,” “Fiddler and the Devil” and “Creepster.” A Bella’s Bartok show features lots of stomping, shouting, jumping around and a general sense of mayhem. The group often takes the stage looking quite dapper, wearing crisp ties and suspenders, only to end up sweat … 0

Sounds Local: “Hey guys, you want to put on a show?”

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Nan Parati knows a thing or two about good music. Parati, the owner of Elmer’s Store in Ashfield, is a former resident of New Orleans, a city that is synonymous with good music. She moved to Ashfield in 2005, but has continued to serve as the art department co-coordinator of the New Orleans … 0

Sounds Local: Sexism debate puts national spotlight on local teen rockers

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

When Kalliope Jones, a local band of Franklin County teens, recently entered a Battle of the Bands competition at the Three County Fair in Northampton, it walked away with third prize and a stinging lesson about sexism in the music world. The band, which is made up of Amelia Chalfant, 14, on bass, … 1

Sounds Local: Nirvana cover night at The ’Voo

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

“With the lights out, it’s less dangerous Here we are now, entertain us I feel stupid and contagious Here we are now, entertain us — Kurt Cobain “Smells Like Teen Spirit” Nirvana just might be the most important … 0

Sounds Local: All COOP’ed Up Concert will help you thaw out

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Been feeling cooped up all winter? Are you desperate to get out of the house to hear some live music? The members of the Franklin County Musicians Cooperative, better known as the Coop, know just how you feel … 0

Sounds Local: Good bye winter, hello music!

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Every show I wrote about during the month of February was affected by bad weather. Some of these — Robin Lane’s Songbird Sings benefit at the Parlor Room and Trailer Park’s fundraiser for Big Brothers Big Sisters at … 0

Sounds Local: The Snaz celebrates ‘Running Away From Home’

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

“When you’re only 15 with nothing to do/Your eyes are all red and watering, too/All they ever tell you is/You’re too young, too old/Missing out on all the fun,” sings Dharma Ramirez on the song “Only 15.” That … 0

Sounds Local: Pushing in a new direction, JD McPherson’s 2nd CD explores new musical sounds

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Recording the follow-up to a successful debut album can be a rather daunting task. Just ask JD McPherson. The Oklahoma rocker won great acclaim for his 2012 debut “Signs & Signifiers,” a disc that was originally released on … 0

Sounds Local: Keep an eye on these ‘Kids’

Thursday, February 19, 2015

The Wall Street Journal recently included the Northampton-based indie-pop trio And the Kids in an article titled, “2015’s Next Big Things: 8 Musical Acts to Watch.” That’s not really surprising news for music fans here in western Massachusetts … 0

Sounds Local: A night for love and music

Thursday, February 12, 2015

This weekend is Valentine’s Day and in honor of this day of love, some of our local musicians are opening their hearts and celebrating the holiday by helping others and holding benefit concerts. So instead of chocolates and … 0

Sounds Local: A cathartic jumping off point

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

It was through songwriting that Robin Lane achieved success. But more than providing her with a career, song writing saved Lane’s life. And now, Lane is working with other women to tell their stories through song and, in … 0

Sounds Local: CD releases — from basement music, to middle age, to a one-man band, to cutting-edge bluegrass to lyrical lullabies

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

The year has just begun and here at Sounds Local we have already seen the arrival of some excellent new music. There are even more releases on the horizon, so read on to get the lowdown on these … 0

Sounds Local: Whiskey Treaty Roadshow

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Remember the Whiskey Treaty festivals at the Arts Block in Greenfield a couple of years ago? All that fine music and fine whiskey? Well the good news is that the Whiskey Treaty lives! The Whiskey Treaty Festival, which … 0

Sounds Local: Messy moments, complex feelings

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Last month, Carolyn Walker of Amherst released her second CD, “Incarnadine,” a collection of 10 emotionally charged songs wrapped in melodies that you can get lost in, delivered in a voice that is pure and clean. Walker will … 0

Sounds Local: Too slow, too sparse or too weird

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Dave Houghton has been writing songs for the past 25 years but had yet to release a solo album until a couple of months ago. Houghton had always presented his songs in a band format — first with … 0